MURRAY, Ky. — On Wednesday, Oct. 25, more than 150 regional high school students visited Murray State University for the 2017 Educators Rising Conference, hosted by the Teacher Quality Institute in the College of Education and Human Services.

This annual event centers around the question of “Why Teach?” Numerous break-out sessions supported this theme and were presented by the Kentucky Department of Education, Murray State faculty and staff, regional teachers and even current University students, who shared their personal experiences of going through the college’s education programs.

“In addition to the human services areas, such as social work, criminal justice, nonprofit leadership studies and communication disorders, our college offers programs in early childhood, elementary, middle, secondary, career and technical, special, gifted and health and physical education,” said Dr. David Whaley, dean of the College of Education and Human Services. “Our students have opportunities to obtain associate, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist and doctoral degrees.”

Established in 1937, the Future Educators Organization, now known as Educators Rising, was designed to interest the most promising young people in teaching as a career. Today, the national student organization is dedicated to supporting high school students interested in education-related professions.

“High school students are at a pivotal point in their lives when it’s time to seriously consider which profession may be right for them,” said Kem Cothran, coordinator of the Teacher Quality Institute. “This annual conference allows many of the best and brightest students in our region to further explore teaching as a career path.”

This year’s Educators Rising Conference also provided students the opportunity to compete in various events. Listed below are the first-place winners of these competitions.

Bulletin Board Design

Graves County High School – Bailey Dublin, Haley Feezor, Eden Jetton and Alyssa Smith

Career Exploration

Graves County High School – Victoria Morales

Children’s Literature (K-3)

Fulton County High School – Jenna Elliot and Haley Hartman

Educators Rising Moment

Muhlenberg County High School – Amara Stroud

Impromptu Lesson

Muhlenberg County High School – Kennedy Bunch, Meredith Mayes, Karsen Steele, Amara Stroud and Tammy White

Job Interview

Muhlenberg County High School – Keely Dennis


Graves County High School – Ethan Alexander

Researching Learning Challenges

Muhlenberg County High School – Kennedy Bunch, Karsen Steele, Amara Stroud and Tammy White

Overall, participating students were accompanied by 15 sponsors from 11 regional high schools, including Ballard Memorial, Calloway County, Carlisle County, Corbin Independent, Fulton County, Graves County, Hickman County, Lyon County, Muhlenberg County, Murray Independent and Trigg County.

To learn more about the Murray State Teacher Quality Institute and Educators Rising, please contact Kem Cothran at kcothran1@murraystate.eduor 270-809-2090.

Photo Caption: A group from Calloway County High School poses for a photo at the 2017 Educators Rising Conference held Oct. 25 at Murray State University.

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